Disney Plus is getting ads and going up in price – is it still worth it?

A 38% rise in price will hit Disney Plus in the US from December

Disney Plus logo / I am Groot
(Image credit: Disney)

The Walt Disney Company has announced that Disney Plus is set to increase in price later this year for those in the US with an ads-based tier also set to be introduced. 

A Disney Plus basic plan will now cost $7.99 per month or $79.90 per year. This is the same price as subscribers pay now, however, introduces ads to the streaming platform for the very first time, something the company teased earlier this year (and Netflix is likely to follow shortly). 

To gain access to Disney Plus movies and shows without ads, a premium plan will cost $10.99 per month or $109.99 per year. This is the second rise in price for Disney Plus since the service launched in November 2019, originally offering membership at $6.99 per month. It's a move many expected as Disney Plus has now overtaken Netflix to become the dominant streaming platform on the market at 221.1 million total subscribers globally. 

Meanwhile, a Disney Plus and Hulu bundle basic plan will now cost $9.99 per month, while adding ESPN Plus into the mix as well will total $12.99 on a monthly basis. Both of these bundles will include ads. All of these changes are due to come into effect on December 8th, 2022. 

"With our new ad-supported Disney Plus offering and an expanded lineup of plans across our entire streaming portfolio, we will be providing greater consumer choice at a variety of price points to cater to the diverse needs of our viewers and appeal to an even broader audience,” said Disney media and entertainment distribution chairman Kareem Daniel.

"Disney Plus, Hulu, and ESPN Plus feature unparalleled content and viewing experiences and offer the best value in streaming today, with over 100,000 movie titles, TV episodes, original shows, sports, and live events collectively."

So, the question is: is Disney Plus still worth it? In comparison, a Netflix basic plan without ads costs $9.99 a month while an Amazon Prime Video subscription by itself is $8.99 a month. That's something worth considering as while only slightly cheaper it can make a difference overall to your yearly outgoings. Additionally, for $14.99 or $139.99 a year, a full Amazon Prime membership can be grabbed alongside Prime Video. Netflix is also set to introduce ads of its own at some point in the future, likely next year. 

Then it comes down to content. Disney Plus is perfect for kids, offering lots of films and series from the Disney and Pixar brand (I recently watched the charming Baymax shorts and found them just as entertaining as any adult would). On top of this, you have Star Wars and Marvel – two of the biggest IPs on the planet. If you are heavily invested in either, Disney Plus is a must. On the other hand, Netflix has the likes of Stranger Things and Amazon Prime has The Boys (arguably both's biggest shows in terms of views and pop culture). It's completely up to you and your preference.  

Baymax

(Image credit: Disney)

I'm personally planning on dropping Amazon Prime Video until the next season of The Boys or Invincible due to a price hike hitting the UK soon. Disney Plus is worth keeping for me as beyond the likes of Marvel and Star Wars, a lot of films are hitting the platform in quick succession from cinemas, such as Lightyear. We also get the Star brand in Europe that recently debuted Prey, the new Predator movie everyone is talking about. Besides that, Disney Plus is set for a big month in August

Looking to get Disney Plus for free? Check out T3's tips on Disney Plus offers, deals and how to get it at the cheapest price 

Matthew Forde
Staff Writer

Matthew is the Staff Writer for T3, covering news and keeping up with everything games, entertainment, and all manner of tech. You can find his work across numerous sites across the web, including TechRadar, IGN, Tom's Guide, Fandom, NME, and more. In his spare time, Matthew is an avid cinema-goer, keen runner and average golfer (at best). You can follow him @MattForde64